Persaud explains temporary measures to curb Pofit/Foulis flooding
Guyana Chronicle
September 17, 2003

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THE Sea Defence Unit (SDU) in Ministry of Public Works and Communications is implementing temporary measures to stem the flooding at Profit/Foulis, West Coast Berbice, as funds are currently unavailable to do permanent works.

SDU Head, Mr. Mahadeo Persaud told the Chronicle that, because of excessive erosion, the existing earthen sea dam is susceptible to regular breaches and has caused intermittent floods, with water reaching on to the public road and causing inconvenience.

He said SDU had no alternative to the current undertaking, as an application to Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) for a US$5M loan has not yet borne fruit. But negotiations are ongoing and he is optimistic that the approval would be secured by December.

Persaud said additional work is being done to provide support for the earth dam and it includes closing off canals and collector drains so as to restrict the water flow when there are breaches or overtopping during high tides.

A secondary dam is also being built and every effort is being made to finish the jobs before the onset of the Spring tide next week, he explained.

Persaud said it is important that the flooding is curbed as there are about 25 households rearing livestock in the community.

He pointed out, though, that the cutting of large swathes of mangrove trees to fire the making of claybricks over the past ten years has contributed significantly to the present situation.

Mangroves serve as a natural sea defence and, while the SDU did monitor and exercise control over the illegal harvesting; the hewing was done late at night when it was difficult to detect.

Persaud said, when the borrowing from CDB is approved, a permanent riprap type sea defence structure would be erected.